I don’t know who needs to hear this right now, but you are creative.
I don’t know you, obviously. Maybe you are a “to do” list type of person (my kind of people). Maybe you are an engineer. Maybe messiness is a sign of functionality and productivity in your world. I don’t know. I don’t care. Because you are creative.
A friend of mine wrote me about failing NaNoWriMo recently. They had written 30,000 words (nothing to be ashamed of!) and were worried it was a mess, it would need major editing and maybe she shouldn’t even finish it. I’m not always great council but I sent her the above photo from Ben Fold’s memoire “A Dream About Fireflies”, which is really good and you should check out, and told her three things:
1) Being hard on yourself feels good on a certain level but is one of the many enemies of creativity.
2) In writing, work needs to exist before it can be edited and crafted so “getting it down” is of the utmost importance.
3) NO TWO ARTISTS CREATE ART IN THE SAME WAY! Maybe you write 30,000 words a month or 30,000 words every three months or maybe you have bursts of creativity followed by fallow times and it’s all fine. It’s all fine. As long as you are thinking and creating and working, that’s the key.
This weekend I am spending time creating art in a group setting. It will be a lot of work and I’ve been sort of dreading the work until I went back and read that bit up top. “Beware the little things that can erode our creativity as we grow up”. A lot of people will eat themselves into a coma (which I did yesterday) and not spend their free time creating. That isn’t me. I’m trying to not erode creativity because I value it. Hopefully that’s you, too.
If that is you and you need to recharge, fine. But don’t stop creating. If you need some time for self care, fine. But don’t stop creating. If you failed NaNoWriMo and feel terrible about it, that’s OK. But don’t stop creating. If you haven’t created in a while, that’s not great. But don’t stop creating.
Because you are creative if you want to be and if you work at it. Many things might be my downfall but not working will not be one of them. Go create something soon. Because you are creative.